The Government’s Winter Grant of £3.8m is being added to £2.4m existing funding for Essex County Council (ECC) to see struggling families and adults through Christmas and the dark days of winter.
Rebecca Harris MP is pleased that ECC, through the Government’s funding, will be able to provide warmth, food, emergency grants and support to most vulnerable residents hit by the pandemic in Castle Point.
The blanket £6.2m package for December to March 2021 recognises the many ways the pandemic has affected people. It includes:
- Free school meals vouchers for all eligible children through the Christmas and half-term school holidays
- Winter warmth packages for vulnerable adults leaving hospital
- Emergency grants for food, heating, energy and water bills and essential household goods for people struggling to pay bills
- Home-Start packages for parents of 0-5 year old children, targeted at the most deprived wards across the county
- Support for carers and people with learning disabilities
- Christmas food and gift hampers for care leavers
- Grants for local community food initiatives nominated by local Essex County Councillors.
Rebecca is also pleased that the package will provide funding to increase capacity and resource for food banks and food delivery projects, housing and debt advice, mental health, domestic abuse and drug and alcohol support. Both holiday hunger and activity programmes are set to be expanded further to reach even more vulnerable children and support their families.
In addition, an offer for school children during the Easter, Summer, and Christmas 2021 holidays is currently being developed and details will follow.
Rebecca welcomes the Government’s efforts to ensure that her constituents who are struggling this winter are offered support, with help to heat their home, put food on the table and assist with key bills.
For information about how to access support during the pandemic, please visit: www.essex.gov.uk/topic/support-for-residents.